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A Masterpiece of Mountain Living

The Elegant Ski Chalet in Sun Valley

Nestled against the majestic backdrop of Bald Mountain in Idaho, an architectural gem redefines mountain retreats. This two-bedroom ski chalet is the brainchild of Farmer Payne Architects, a firm that has seamlessly blended bold architectural concepts with progressive engineering to create a home not just with a view, but with a vision.

Embracing the Elements

The chalet’s design is a testament to the harmony between aesthetics and function. Built to withstand the forces of nature, including avalanches, the structure stands as a beacon of resilience. Its location, carefully chosen to maximize the breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes, incorporates the use of board-formed concrete both internally and externally, ensuring a seamless integration with the natural beauty of Sun Valley.

The design’s most striking feature, a cantilevered roof, allows for an unobstructed panorama of the mountainous horizon, while inviting an abundance of natural light through floor-to-ceiling glass doors. This thoughtful consideration extends the living space outdoors, merging the comfort of the interior with the grandeur of the external environment.

A Collaboration of Craftsmanship and Elegance

In partnership with Jennifer Hoey Interior Design, the interior spaces reflect a modest yet sophisticated approach. The emphasis on clean details and natural materials complements the home’s exterior, providing a cohesive and tranquil living environment. This collaboration has culminated in creating an open-living oasis that invites homeowners to entertain, enjoy, and embrace their mountain retreat with every modern comfort at their fingertips.

Overcoming Challenges with Creative Solutions

The journey to realization was not without its hurdles. Situated on a challenging lot within an avalanche zone, coupled with strict city regulations, the project demanded innovative solutions. The additional layer of complexity brought on by the 2020 pandemic further tested the team’s resilience and ability to adapt. However, the culture of collaboration among the architects, designers, and the community paved the way for a successful outcome, earning the project an AIA Idaho award.

This ski chalet is more than a home; it is a milestone for Farmer Payne Architects’ Sun Valley studio. It showcases the firm’s prowess in navigating difficult terrains and conditions, setting a new standard for architectural excellence in mountain living. The project stands as a testament to what can be achieved when creative minds come together, blending the art of design with the science of engineering to create a masterpiece that is both a shelter and a statement.

As we marvel at this architectural feat, it’s clear that the essence of mountain living has been redefined. This ski chalet not only offers a sanctuary for its homeowners but also serves as a beacon of inspiration for architecture that respects and enhances its natural surroundings.

Photography: Gabe Border | Architectural Photographer Gabe Border

Project team